Beginning life as a sub Teacher

The school year has begun and it is both overwhelming for those who have jobs and those who are subbing. I was lucky to get a few days subbing on the first week of school. It was a great experience as I was able to see the work that’s put in by all staff to get the school ready for the children. As well as that, a lot of the first day with the children is sorting books, copies, seats etc., so it can be a busy day.

During my subbing, I used both books from the classroom and lessons I had used on teaching practice. This worked very well and left no time to spare during the day. Preparation is key when subbing! However, this can be hard when it’s a last minute call so remember to have a bag ready with resources!

I used some classroom management skills that you could use when subbing that worked well. I love using a Mr. Potato man. If the children get all the pieces on by the end of the day/week, they get golden time or a treat. I also did teacher vs class, this is a clapping game. The children must  copy the teacher’s clapping rhythm and if they do not repeat it right, the teacher gets the point and if they do, the children get the point.

As substitute teachers, I think classroom management is something we should really focus on. Children can often see substitute teachers as a “day off work” or not take us as seriously as their own teacher. Before beginning my first day, I showed a minion video of classroom rules. The children enjoyed it and were very engaged in the video. I would refer back to the video at times throughout the day to remind the children of the classroom rules.

The start of the year can be quiet for subbing, so do not be disheartened if you are waiting a few weeks before you get a call. Good luck to all starting teaching this September!

A New Beginning

Now that a tough year has come to an end, what’s next? I find myself feeling excited to start my teaching career but at the same time it is all quite daunting! When I am feeling overwhelmed I like to organise myself, it eases my nerves. I decided I would make a CV and start handing them out to schools around my area. I made a list of things I should include with my CV. As well as my CV, I attached a copy of my teaching council registration (under Further Education) , my Statutory Declaration form, Garda Vetting and a cover letter to explain my results are pending and a few details about myself and the type of teacher I strive to be. I also made business cards stating my qualification from July/August 2016. I think the schools were impressed that I had all this organised in one slip pocket. One principal actually thanked me and said that she appreciated the fact that I had included these. If you are handing out you CV, I would include these documents to show you are organised and hungry to start your teaching career.

My next step as a newly qualified teacher is job applications and subbing. The thought of subbing is both exciting and daunting. However, the possibility of floating around from school to school and not having a class to call your own sounds a bit intimidating to me. Nonetheless, I have been thinking, how can I make subbing easier on myself? I have decided to have a subbing bag packed and ready to go with all the essentials I will need and a few extra resources for each level to be fully prepared. I also think it is important to note for the class teacher what happened and content covered. I think this would be greatly appreciated by the returning class teacher.

I am not applying for many jobs but I found the standard application form overwhelming to start with. I overcame this by reminding myself why I am in this career and I found myself including these points in places throughout my standard application form. I am a newly qualified teacher; people are interested to see what strategies and approaches I have to teaching. I am constantly trying to think outside the box of how a lesson can be made active and fun and engage all children. When I begin to think of this, I get very excited and eager to begin my career.

So far, I have been taking these steps mentioned in my new career as a teacher. I wish all newly qualified teachers the best of luck in your new career and I hope this post helps in your CV and job application process.

Kellie.